Commentary: ‘Start Your Activism @ Home’ in Arlington

Commentary: ‘Start Your Activism @ Home’ in Arlington

Arlington County nonprofits to participate in June 8 event.

On Thursday, June 8, more than 215 Arlington County nonprofits will join together with other organizations throughout the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area to take part in United Way of the National Capital Area’s Do More 24 — the region’s largest online giving day expected to raise nearly $2 million for local charities.

With the current political environment, including calls from Congress to slash federal spending, many nonprofits servicing Arlington County residents are fearful of their ability to carry out mission-critical work. A reduction in federal funding for nonprofits throughout the area could dramatically impact initiatives, such as providing food for the hungry, job counseling for the unemployed, health care services for seniors, as well as access to affordable housing and child care for low-income families.

All of this is happening against a backdrop of an increased need for critical services for our area’s most vulnerable populations from local charities whose capacity is already strained past the point of breaking. We are hearing from our nonprofit partners on a daily basis about the overwhelming demand for services for the area’s immigrant population, homeless neighbors in need, women’s reproductive health and other “at-risk” populations.

In response, the nonprofit community has come together to launch this year’s Do More 24 theme titled, “Start Your Activism @ Home,” an urgent appeal for local residents to think locally, give locally by supporting hundreds of nonprofits throughout our area on-the-front lines right here in our own community.

Many national nonprofits and advocacy organizations, like the ACLU and Planned Parenthood, have reported a skyrocketing increase in giving by members throughout the country. As we know, local residents in our area tend to be some of the most highly engaged politically and are often times digging deepest to help support those organizations and causes near and dear to their hearts.

“Start Your Activism @ Home” is a call to action, a reminder to all of us that making a difference can happen right here in Arlington County by supporting any of the 140 plus organizations signed up to participate in this year’s Do More 24.

Since its inception in 2013, Do More 24 has raised more than $5 million from over 42,400 donations benefiting hundreds of local nonprofit organizations in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland areas. Every dollar raised is reinvested right back in communities like Arlington County and goes directly towards helping those organizations fill holes in their budgets, buy desperately needed new equipment and ultimately serve more people in need across our region.

An example of charities in the area that will benefit from this year’s Do More 24 include Arlington Thrive whose mission is to deliver same-day emergency funds to Arlington-area neighbors in crisis, so they can be secure in their jobs, health, and homes and thrive in a caring community.

Also, Doorways for Women and Families, which creates pathways out of homelessness, domestic violence and sexual assault for women, children and families and leading to safe, stable and empowered lives.

Residents throughout our area are more engaged than ever and are looking for ways to make a difference. On June 8, Do More 24’s “Start Your Activism @ Home” is an opportunity for all of us to remember that resilience starts locally and to shine a spotlight on the need for supporting our hometown organizations making a difference.

Brinkley is the chief operating officer for United Way of the National Capital Area, who will host its community-wide Do More 24 Online Giving Day on June 8th. Residents can schedule in advance beginning May 25th and all day on June 8th at